Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) Curriculum

Graduate students working on a project

The on-campus Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) requires 32 credit hours for completion – at least 20 hours of graduate-level accountancy courses and at least four hours in a non-accountancy graduate course. This is a non-thesis program. Publication is not required for completion of the program.

You take courses over three semesters (summer, fall, and spring) – June to May.

Quick Facts:

  • 32 total credit hours required
  • 20 credit hours of accountancy coursework (minimum)
  • 4 credit hours of non-accountancy coursework (minimum)
  • 8 credit hours of graduate electives
  • 3-semester program that starts in June each year

Core Courses

The following core courses are recommended for every master's in accounting student. If you've previously completed any of the courses below, you'll take a suitable replacement course approved by a program advisor.

Elective Options

You take elective courses during the program. At least four credit hours must be in a non-accountancy course. Elective options may vary by term.

Accountancy Electives
Non-Accountancy Electives
CPA Review Course

ACCY 398: CPA Exam Preparation Course
As part of this course, we offer an online CPA review. This course becomes available to MSA students during the spring semester. Although the credit hours do not count towards the degree, they do count toward full-time student status, are reflected in the student’s overall GPA, and they may help meet the Illinois Board of Examiners requirement to take the CPA exam.

This course does not count toward the 32 credit hour requirement for the MSA degree and is taken beyond that requirement.

Sample Schedule

The master's in accounting program is open to students of all academic backgrounds. A bachelor's degree in accounting is not required. Our MSA team will provide you with a customized study plan to address your specific background. Below is a popular sample schedule for many MSA students.

Summer Semester

The summer semester begins in June each year.

  • Accounting Analysis I
  • Process Management or Advanced Corporate Finance
Fall Semester

The fall semester begins in August each year.

  • Accounting Analysis II
  • Auditing
  • Federal Taxation
  • Elective Course
Spring Semester

The spring semester begins in January each year.

  • Managerial Accounting
  • Optional CPA Review
Smiling student at a table with other students

Available Concentrations

Accountancy Concentrations
In addition to the core curriculum, some students may be eligible to add a concentration. Our MSA program has two accountancy concentrations:

Data Analytics in Accountancy
  • ACCY 570: Data Analytics Foundations for Accountancy
  • ACCY 575: Data Analytics Applications in Accountancy

And one of the following

  • ACCY 571: Statistical Analyses for Accountancy
  • ACCY 512: Data Analytics for Management Accounting
  • ACCY 574: Risk Management and Innovation
  • ACCY 592: Introduction to Accounting Research

Or both

  • ACCY 505 and ACCY 554: Multistate Taxation & International Taxation

Learn more

  • ACCY 551: Corporate Income Taxation
  • ACCY 552: Partnership Income Taxation
  • ACCY 556: Tax Research

Learn more

Non-Accountancy Concentrations
You also can add non-accountancy concentrations. Please note that these concentrations have very limited seats.

Corporate Governance & International Business

Select three of the following:

  • BADM 532: Sustainable Product Design & Enterprise Plan Development - I: Bottom-Up Immersion & Design
  • BADM 582: Multinational Management
  • BADM 583: Current Topics in International Business
  • BADM 584: Global Marketing
  • BADM 586: International Comparative Management
  • BADM 590: Seminar in Business Administration (US Corporate Governance)
  • BADM 590: Seminar in Business Administration (Technology and Globalization)
  • BADM 590: Seminar in Business Administration (Global Strategy)

Learn more

  • FIN 511: Investments
  • FIN 512: Derivatives
  • FIN 521: Advanced Corporate Finance

Learn more

Information Technology & Control

BADM 555: Information Systems Development and Management

Select from the following:

  • BADM 525: New Product Development
  • BADM 557: Business Intelligence
  • BADM 558: Big Data Infrastructures
  • BADM 559: Enterprise IT Governance
  • BADM 589: Project Management

Learn more

Supply Chain Management
  • BADM 566: Supply Chain Management
  • BADM 567: Operations Management

Select from the following:

  • BADM 561: Revenue Management
  • BADM 564: Business Process Improvement
  • BADM 565: Strategic Sourcing
  • BADM 573: Decision Analytics
  • BADM 575: Supply Chain Analytics
  • BADM 589: Project Management

Learn more

Help your community while enhancing your accounting skills

As a graduate accounting student at Gies, you can become a tax preparer or tax reviewer with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. It’s a great way to make a difference in the community and gain real-world tax experience that employers are looking for.

Learn more

Take the next step toward earning your MSA.